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posted by janrinok on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:16PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the How-do-I-feel? dept.

Papas Fritas writes:

"Elizabeth Howell reports at Space.com that a Canadian team exploring Antarctica this month is testing Astroskin, a garment that fits over a person's upper body and is embedded with wireless sensors. The eight crew members of the the XPAntarctik expedition, who have vowed to use no motorized vehicles during their trek, are spending 45 days in a previously unexplored region of the continent and beaming their medical information back to the University of Quebec at Montreal while wearing Astroskin. Doctors can see each explorers' vital signs, including blood pressure, blood oxygen levels, heart rate, breathing rate, and skin temperature, as well as how well the they are sleeping and how they are moving. "The great thing about this technology is since it's wireless, it can be monitored at a distance," says CSA chief medical officer Raffi Kuyumijian. "People who live in remote communities, for example, will have an easy access to a doctor. They can have these shirts on them all the time. It can trigger alarms if something wrong is happening, and alert the doctors following at a distance." The Canadian team has not indicated when Astroskin could fly in space, but says it could be used on the International Space Station during future missions."

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  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by solozerk on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:38PM

    by solozerk (382) on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:38PM (#12068)

    Apparently the shirt itself uses a smartphone for coms with a central server (second link) - how will that work exactly ? how does the smartphone exchange data with said server ? my guess is bluetooth between the shirt and the phone, and then wifi between the phone and the (on-orbit or in the case of the arctic trial, on-sleigh :p) server. But does the ISS even have WIFI ? I'd guess not due to possible RF interference. And what about during EVAs ?

    Also, it'd be interesting to have details on the battery capacity of the shirt itself - recharging a shirt may be a bit inconvenient, and would require either monitoring downtime or having the wearer being literally plugged in during charge.

    All in all, though, interesting tech, that might have lots of other uses (elderly people health monitoring at-home with automated call to the emergency service in case of issue, for example).

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:44PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:44PM (#12074)

      During EVAs they wear a space suit which I guess already does all that monitoring. But then, I don't see why a space suit could not be equipped to communicate with the shirt.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:52PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @05:52PM (#12079)

      About the energy question: Maybe they could use something like this [theengineer.co.uk] to power the shirt.

  • (Score: 3, Funny) by edIII on Thursday March 06 2014, @06:49PM

    by edIII (791) on Thursday March 06 2014, @06:49PM (#12123)

    I'm sure the people wearing were wondering why they couldn't test in the Caribbean, or some other tropical location.

    Seeing scantily clad local girls would have been very good for testing blood pressure and vitals. I wonder if they could have detected the mai tais?

    --
    Technically, lunchtime is at any moment. It's just a wave function.
    • (Score: 3, Funny) by c0lo on Thursday March 06 2014, @10:42PM

      by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Thursday March 06 2014, @10:42PM (#12271) Journal

      Seeing scantily clad local girls

      ... and still keeping the shirt on? Man, gotta tell yeah.. if those are the choices, I fully understand them picking Antarctica.

      --
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
  • (Score: 2, Funny) by skullz on Thursday March 06 2014, @07:02PM

    by skullz (2532) on Thursday March 06 2014, @07:02PM (#12130)
    Okay, I see this as awesome and cool and something Google or Microsoft will get their hands on soon (except the ENTIRE torso, Microsoft) but...


    People who live in remote communities, for example, will have an easy access to a doctor ... It can trigger alarms if something wrong is happening, and alert the doctors following at a distance.


    Regarding monitoring with health issues remotely would only be useful if there was actually someone near by who knew what to do when something went wrong and had the tools. Say, at a hospital, clinic, or medical helicopter. Which isn't remote monitoring.

    So you slap on monitoring shirt on Ol Grandpa with a heart condition and send him back out to his cabin in the woods he grew from the very rock himself and... what? Monitor his heart attack in real time while eating Cheetos? Call him up and say "yeah, you probably are going to die. Burn anything you don't want your family to see"?
    • (Score: 1) by rts008 on Thursday March 06 2014, @07:28PM

      by rts008 (3001) on Thursday March 06 2014, @07:28PM (#12145)

      Yeah, that struck me as a poor example of uses for this also, for those very reasons.
      Adding to that, how will they afford the shirts?
      Yeah, right!

      However, I could see the advantages to 'linking' this shirt to an astronaut's suit, and have the suit controls respond appropriately to the shirt sensors.
      Similar to a lot of sci-fi 'power armor' with an AI monitoring the 'pilot' and taking corrective action to protect/save the 'pilot'.

      I would expect this is one of the expected uses of this tech eventually, it's obvious to me, and I suspect that most of the people working on this are a little brighter than me.

  • (Score: 1, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @08:52PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 06 2014, @08:52PM (#12201)

    Yep, our remote analysis confirms it, definitely eaten by a polar bear.

    • (Score: 3, Funny) by EvilJim on Thursday March 06 2014, @09:49PM

      by EvilJim (2501) on Thursday March 06 2014, @09:49PM (#12236) Journal

      Sorry, this is ANTarctica, they would be eaten by penguins or orca.

      • (Score: 1) by Woods on Friday March 07 2014, @02:08PM

        by Woods (2726) <woods12@gmail.com> on Friday March 07 2014, @02:08PM (#12655) Journal

        I pick penguins. How ADORABLE would that be.

        • (Score: 2) by EvilJim on Monday March 10 2014, @10:23PM

          by EvilJim (2501) on Monday March 10 2014, @10:23PM (#14323) Journal

          I too would like that, but only if Morgan Freeman narrates.